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The Walking Dead is 2012's best-reviewed game

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

The retail release of The Walking Dead won 2012 Game of the Year honors from Metacritic with a Metascore of 95 out of 100, and while it was undeniably a great year for games, the review-aggregating site noted in its 2012 round-up that last year's top-scoring titles didn't reach the same heights as in previous years.

None of the five individual Walking Dead episodes scored higher than an 89, and the disc-based collection was one of only 14 console games and 18 non-iOS titles overall to reach the "universal acclaim" threshold Metascore of 90. In 2011, 23 console titles and 32 games overall achieved a 90 Metascore; 2012's total is the lowest since Metacritic began publishing year-end reports in 2009. And with a 95 Metascore, The Walking Dead is the lowest-scoring Game of the Year winner (i.e., the worst-reviewed best-reviewed game of the year) since the PC version of Grand Theft Auto: Vice City took top honors in 2004.

Metacritic pointed out an increased level of glitches and bugs as a possible reason for lower-scoring 2012 reviews; the Walking Dead disc release, for example, suffers from a number of serious issues, and its digital counterparts didn't fare much better.

Here's Metacritic's platform-by-platform breakdown of the year's best games:

Xbox 360
Best Game: The Walking Dead, 95
Best Exclusive: Trials Evolution, 90

PlayStation 3
Best Game: Mass Effect 3, 93
Best Exclusive: Journey, 92

Wii U
Best Game: Mass Effect 3: Special Edition, 87
Best Exclusive: New Super Mario Bros. U, 84

Best Game: Xenoblade Chronicles, 92
Best Exclusive: Xenoblade Chronicles, 92

Windows PC
Best Game: Dishonored, 91
Best Exclusive: Guild Wars 2, 90

Nintendo 3DS
Best Game: Colors! 3D, 89
Best Exclusive: Colors! 3D, 89

Nintendo DS
Best Game: Pokémon Black Version 2, 81
Best Exclusive: Pokémon Black Version 2, 81

PlayStation Vita
Best Game: Persona 4 Golden, 94
Best Exclusive: LittleBigPlanet PS Vita, 87

PlayStation Portable
Best Game: Velocity, 87
Best Exclusive: Velocity, 87

Check out Metacritic for more metrics and analysis of 2012's top titles.